KK Kozik: Imitation of Life

            Image: KK Kozik, Bird, oil on linen, 2009 /   ©  KK Kozik

            Image: KK Kozik, Bird, oil on linen, 2009 / ©KK Kozik

Press Release / January 21 - February 20, 2010

Black & White Gallery, New York, NY is very pleased to present Imitation of Life – solo exhibition by KK Kozik.

Working almost like a film maker, Kozik’s’s approach to painting embodies active narration and visualization. This tendency emerges strongly in the new body of work as the artist plays out her newly found interest in the cinematic properties of films, particularly the ones that span genres from thrillers to screwball comedies. Paintings and drawings included in this exhibition illustrate acts that are both true to life and fantastical, with exaggerated elements and small, poetic moments. Stylistically evocative of another time altogether, the work offers a realistic view into a particular, and seemingly mysterious, lifestyle. While contemporary culture has, of late, been providing us with many visual throwbacks, Kozik’s work derives from her own childhood recollections of adults and their behavior in polite society. Since the work pivots around the issues of interpersonal relationships, it can be easily relegated to domestic melodrama and kitsch if it was not for its intense compositional formalism and visual wit that force the viewers to avoid safe clichés.

The title for the show was borrowed from the film by Douglas Sirk, the German émigré auteur whose mid-century films include “Imitation of Life.” He was described by critic Gary Morris as a director par excellence of “the women’s picture...a genre that lacks the hip cachet of film noir or the western.” In the seventies, Sirk’s films were embraced by Fassbinder and presented by MOMA in a Retrospective. 

KK Kozik has exhibited extensively throughout the United States and abroad. She has been reviewed in Artforum, Art in America, ArtNews, New Yorker, and The New York Times, among others. Her work was included in the Brooklyn Museum’s survey of Brooklyn artists, Open House, and was recently featured at the Fitton Center for the Arts in Cincinatti. Her etching “Force Majeure” won the Magnesium Elektron Prize at 2009 North American Print Biennial and her laminated stained glass windows were recently installed at the Rockaway Beach subway station, a commission from the MTA’s Art for Transit program. She is represented in many private and public collections. Imitation of Life is Kozik's third solo exhibition at Black & White Gallery and the first one in the gallery's Chelsea location. KK Kozik lives and works in Brooklyn, NY and Sharon, CT.

Please note that on February 5, 2010, Black & White Gallery will hold a Black & White Ball to benefit Heifer International, an international charitable organization helping people obtain a sustainable source of food and income. A percentage of art sales from this exhibition will go to Heifer International. www.heifer.org